FOLA – Festival of Live Art



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I like art, but I rarely actually make my way to a gallery or a museum. Somehow I need an event or festival of some sort to highlight the art for me, and then I’ll drag myself there and thoroughly enjoy it. Therefore I got quite a bit excited when I first heard about a brand new arts festival – FOLA – Festival of Live Art. It’s a collaboration between Arts House, Theatre Works in St Kilda and Footscray Community Arts Centre. The festival takes place in the areas surrounding the organisers, mainly Footscray, North Melbourne, CBD and St Kilda.

For three weeks in March you’ll be able to experience a whole lot of performances. Whether you prefer smaller, intimate gatherings, or big, glitzy, spectacular shows, there are plenty to choose from. And it’s not all about watching, the festival is equal parts observing, creating and participating. Most activities are free or at a low-cost, so there’s simply no excuse for you not to go.


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Week 1 / Footscray

The first week of the festival kicks off in Footscray. There’s of course the mandatory opening party, but in addition there’ll be plenty of different activities, ranging from a Eritrean coffee ceremony to a pacman-styled video game installation (so excited about that one!). In between make sure you make some time to head off to one of the workshops, masterclasses or plentiful other opportunities to not just experience, but engage in discussions about art.


Week 2 / North Melbourne and CBD

The second week the festivities move to more central locations. If I were you I’d make sure to make my way by North Melbourne Town Hall, where 15 (yes! Fifteen) live art events will take place. If you’re more of a party person, the Meat Market will host a FOLA post-show club every day between Thursday to Saturday, starting at 9.30pm. On Sunday that post-show club will go even bigger, with a bunch of different performances including a whopping 10 hour event called Performprint.


Week 3 / St Kilda and CBD

Last week the festival moves south. You can for instance check out seven intimate works in unusual locations, or catch the Edinburgh Festival hit Credible Likeable Superstar Role Model. If that’s not enough, wait to the very end of FOLA for The 24 Hour Experience, where there will be 24 performances in 24 hours in the CBD. I’m not sure how you’d ever be able to top that, performance wise.

Festival of Live Art (FOLA)
14 – 30 March 2014
Footscray, North Melbourne, CBD, St Kilda

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